Michigan State Hockey Falls 1-0 To No. 12 Ohio State Buckeyes

Hondo S. Carpenter

The Michigan State Spartans hockey team has shown great improvement this season. But with a shot at a Big Ten title in their sites and an NCAA berth, they have stumbled. After tonight’s loss to No. 12 Ohio State, they have now lost three in a row and five of their last six.

They swept Michigan back in November, only to get swept prior to this weekend’s series with Ohio State by those same aforementioned Wolverines. Here is the full story on the Spartans loss tonight by MSU SID Jeff Barnes.

Spartans Edged By No. 12 OSU

EAST LANSING – The Michigan State hockey team fell to No. 12 Ohio State, 1-0, on Friday night at Munn Ice Arena in front of a sellout crowd of 6,376. The Buckeyes (17-10-1, 11-9-1-0) struck early in the second period for what proved to be the only goal of game.

In his first start since November, sophomore goaltender Drew DeRidder had 33 saves for the Spartans (14-16-1, 10-10-1-0), while OSU’s Tommy Nappier posted a shutout with 25 saves.

“It was a tough battle out there, I thought it was two teams that played pretty hard with a playoff feel to it,” said MSU head coach Danton Cole. “I liked the way our guys battled. Drew (DeRidder) had to jump in and play a heck of a game for us. Jake Smith jumped in and played, and Austin Kamer moved up in the lineup. We had a lot of guys that played really hard who did most things right; you try and scratch and claw.”

OSU outshot the Spartans 11-9 in the opening period and then scored the only goal of the game 2:24 into the second period. Defenseman Matt Miller’s shot from the right point deflected off the boards behind the MSU net, bounced back out front and off the right pad of DeRidder and trickled across the goal line.

“A weird goal like that ends up being the game-winner, but that’s the way it is and that’s why you put pucks on net and good things happen. I have no issues on how hard our guys played,” said Cole. “We have to have that same effort and focus tomorrow but be little bit better and have more energy and we’ll go from there.”

MSU had a chance to counter with the first power-play opportunity of the game later in the second but came away empty.

The Spartans denied OSU’s only power-play chance of the game, which came late in the second, with the help of DeRidder who made five saves during the man-advantage.

One of the Spartans’ best scoring chances of the game came early in the third when Tommy Apap was at the top of the crease and batted a rebound back on net, but Nappier just got his left pad on the shot to keep it out.

MSU had another chance for the equalizer with its second power play of the night just after the Apap attempt but came away empty.

Both teams had eight shots on goal in the third period, while OSU outshot the Spartans 34-25 for the game.

The Spartans and Buckeyes will complete the series on Saturday at 7 p.m. Michigan State will honor its senior class following the conclusion of the game.

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